Meet the real weapon of mass destruction:

The AK-47 has become the world’s most prolific and effective combat weapon, a device so cheap and simple that it can be bought in many countries for less than the cost of a live chicken. Depicted on the flag and currency of several countries, waved by guerrillas and rebels everywhere, the AK is responsible for about a quarter-million deaths every year.

I have no idea as to what can be done about it. It is very much a genie that was let out of a bottle.


So, the National Science Teachers Association isn’t interested in 50,000 free copies of An Inconvenient Truth. Well, I thought that a shame, but did give some credibility to their response, which said that “In their e-mail rejection, they expressed concern that other “special interests” might ask to distribute materials, too; they said they didn’t want to offer “political” endorsement of the film”. Ah, okay. And then I read further:

But there was one more curious argument in the e-mail: Accepting the DVDs, they wrote, would place “unnecessary risk upon the [NSTA] capital campaign, especially certain targeted supporters.” One of those supporters, it turns out, is the Exxon Mobil Corp.

That’s the same Exxon Mobil that for more than a decade has done everything possible to muddle public understanding of global warming and stifle any serious effort to solve it.

Fantastic job, guys.


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And in the “Hmm, there must be more” news, the UK seems to be declining to extend its 50 year copyright term to 95 years. It’s a shocking bit of good sense. We’ll see whether that remains in place. The real test will come in 2012, when the first Beatles recordings bump up against the 50 year term.